MOUNT PROSPECT, IL – After 34 years of steadfast commitment to the mission of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy® (NABP®), NABP Executive Director/Secretary Carmen A. Catizone announced that he will retire in 2020, his 35th year with the Association, and aid in the transition to new leadership.
A search committee is working diligently to select a new executive director to support NABP’s mission of protecting the public health and lead the Association into a data- and technology-focused future. During his time at the Association, Catizone has laid the groundwork for his successor to accomplish this feat.
Catizone began his career at NABP in 1985, when he was hired as the test and measurement director, overseeing the Association’s examination programs, and served as national news editor for the State Newsletter Program. As the test and measurement director, Catizone oversaw the transition of the NABPLEX®, which is now known as the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination® (NAPLEX®), from five separate examinations to an integrated examination more accurately reflecting the practice of pharmacy. His tenure as executive director began in 1988, succeeding Fred T. Mahaffey.
“If I had to set a theme for what lies ahead, it would flow from just a few words – communication, cooperation, and leadership,” said Catizone in his first official communication to member boards of pharmacy in 1988. “Staff and resources of your Association stand ready for a revitalization, a move to a more proactive NABP.”
Under his leadership, NABP has been a trailblazer and innovator in developing tools and services to provide to the state boards, pharmacists, and ultimately, patients.
In his early years, he led the Association through the restructuring of the NABP Clearinghouse, the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990, and the introduction of task forces into the governance of the organization. During his tenure as executive director, the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination® was created and launched.
Catizone carried the Association strategically into the digital age as use of the internet became more prominent. In 1996, NABP started the Electronic Licensure Transfer Program® to provide an easier way for pharmacists to transfer their existing license from one state or jurisdiction to another and transitioned the NAPLEX from a paper and pencil format to a computer adaptive assessment. Two years later, www.nabp.net was introduced, giving the boards access to a multitude of resources and information online.
While the digital world kept progressing, the need to protect patients from bad actors illegally peddling medication on the internet soon became apparent. In 1999, Catizone oversaw the development of the Association’s Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites® (VIPPS®) program, awarding the first VIPPS accreditation in September of that year.
Led by Catizone, NABP developed several tools and programs to help curtail the serious opioid epidemic gripping the United States, including an interconnected communications hub for state prescription monitoring programs (PMPs) called PMP InterConnect®, the AWARXE® Prescription Drug Safety Program for consumer education, and the .Pharmacy Verified Websites Program.
In April 2018, the Association launched an enhanced e-Profile system to eliminate paper and provide efficient, streamlined application processes for many of NABP’s programs and services. This was coupled with the launch of a new NABP e-Profile mobile app, which makes it possible for pharmacists to connect with NABP while on the go.
Although Catizone attributes his accomplishments and successes to the NABP Executive Committee, members and staff of the boards of pharmacy, and the dedicated staff of NABP, his legacy as a thoughtful leader and visionary will no doubt live on in the Association for many more years to come.